What is Michaelmas and what does it offer your soul?
Even for those familiar with and appreciative of the Festival of Michaelmas, this is a valuable question to ask every year.
Is Michaelmas about a saint, an archangel, the harvest, slaying or taming dragons? Or is it about being human and becoming I – in other words, about your inner life? Is Michaelmas about a feast day, or the change of seasons, or a mood of soul, or an attention of soul, a strength of will, and inner threat?
Michael is the archangel that slays dragons with a powerful sword and frees our souls from fear and corruption.
An Inner Festival is not about a social gathering or a religious or seasonal tradition. It is a gathering of particular imaginations, inspirations, and intuitions in your own soul. The force that invites the gathering is an inquiry, a profound wondering living in your open heart-mind, a personal inquiry into the personal significance of the festival in your thinking, feeling, and will.
Inner Michaelmas is all yours – you cannot share the actual inner activity with anyone else. You can share outlines of what you are wondering about with others, even speak about your feelings, and the ensuing conversation can provide comfort and challenge and perhaps a great insight.
Innerness is what makes the mystery of self so solitary and unshareable.
My Inner Festival thoughts on Michaelmas are here to encourage your own inquiry and they honor and revere your inner solitude.
Describe the dragon threatening your soul?
What do you fear in such a way that it corrupts your soul? What devours your confidence in your self? If you are like me there is probably a long list of dragons.
What is the particular sword that would slay a single dragon?
There is a sword for each dragon. Micha-el’s Sword is a sword of Cosmic Force meant for battle with the great Cosmic Dragon. You and I cannot wield such a sword. First, we must begin developing our sword forging craft and our sword wielding skills. We must begin with our own dragons.
If you have time for an artistic activity, you could doing drawings of swords or create a collage in the shape of a sword. Make a sword collage of all the words that represent all the soul gestures and virtues that can transform the beasts that threaten you. Maybe a sword for all the threats to your contribution/work. Another for all the beasts that breathe their destructive fire on your relationships. Another for the demons devouring your health. Or for slaying the one that brings chaos to your attempts at balance and order in your thinking or your activities.
For the really courageous and the Micha-ellically mature!
Discern the dragons you love, that have become soul pets – your identities, your defenses, your addictions, your fantasies, your prejudices. Can you see the corruptions of your attachments to these beautiful, comfortable, familiar impostors? You think these little darlings keep you safe from the hated dragons.
Could you slay these soul pets – your beloved beasties?
The Art and Craft of Slaying Your Inner Dragons – a 2014 Workshop
I realize I have just designed the content of a powerful workshop – a complete Micha-elic inspiration born with my morning cup of tea. (I had decided not to send out a message today – completely let go of the obligation! and then these imaginations started to demand my efforts and the sharing.)
Next year I could come to your group, your church, your school, and give this workshop: The Art and Craft of Slaying Inner Dragons. Let me know if this is something you would like to do. I will have three weekends available around Michaelmas next year.
I like the idea of imagining the swords and giving the demons a shape, a name, a vista…..Having just taken part in telling the story of the myth of Innana, I would name one of my swords myth, another music, another timelessness and yet another compassion. My beasts and demons include pride, terror, perfection, loneliness and the death of the soul. Perhaps I could add to my swords, self acceptance, humility, passion, self forgiveness? I perhaps need to draw these to fully embrace them and I recognise that cling to my own little beasties of distrust of others, self hating addictions and self engrandisement…..thank you for the prompt!